Andy of the Spicy Cauldron has written of a terrifying encounter he had with a hideous apparition known as the Stovepipe Hat Man. You may click on the link provided to read of this unnerving experience and it's frightful physical consequences for one young University student many years ago. There were several witnesses to this apparition, each I'm certain carrying the memory to this day. Events such as the ones detailed by Andy are never forgotten.
While reading of these students experiences I recalled the old British folklore of the bogey man. It is said that the bogey man are a class of spirits that are horribly evil, and love to make mischief on humans. They are described as similar to Andy's description of the stovepipe hat man. Dark, menacing, and often with the glow of red eyes.
The Bogey Man is known by many different names including: bogies, bogey-beasts, boo, bogle, boggart, and the German boggelmann. In Irish folklore there is a similar spirit called the puca.
Children were often threatened with the bogey-man in order to make them behave in years gone by.
These spirits are considered by some to be synonymous with the Christian devil or demons.
Operating usually at night. Sometimes they are solitary, and other times in groups, these bogies terrorize those who are unfortunate enough to encounter them.
I do not believe these "creatures" are related to the traditional human ghost, but perhaps something more dark and earthy. From those who have recounted tales of them they are often referred to as "otherworldly."
In our Alien Abduction/Contact section we have an entry written by a young woman who believes her childhood bogey-man may in fact be "alien" in origin.
An Encyclopedia Of Fairies: Hobgoblins, Brownies, Bogies, and Other Supernatural Creatures, By Katherine Briggs (c) 1976
The Encyclopedia Of Ghosts & Spirits By Rosemary Ellen Guiley (c) 1992